A LifeRing Keeper: 400 Sober Days

From a member of a LifeRing email group:

I joined LifeRing on December 9th of 2011, it was day 3 for me .

I was miserable! Guilt, shame , self-loathing, remorse and despair had become my constant companions. I felt like I was in a state of perpetual grief; I couldn’t think of one good thing to say about myself.  I was terribly lonely, sad and depressed. I was so desperate to change my life…. the drinking that initially brought me relief a long time ago had now taken over my life and kept me in a constant state of misery.

Those first few months were hard at times….early on, some mornings I woke up feeling physically worse then when I was drinking.  But I have to say that some days were wonderful simply because….I was doing it, I was going to bed sober and waking up with a clear conscience if not a clear head.  I hung in there because the good people of LifeRing kept reminding me that there would be good days as well as bad days. I believed them.

Today is day 400 for me!  That’s 399 days of going to bed sober!

So what is my life like today? My life is not perfect by any means….I still face challenges like everyone does, you know…stuff….

The difference is that I don’t obsess about this stuff like I did when I was going to bed drunk every night.  I’m much calmer, my moods are stable for the most part.  I have moments of joy and laughter in my life…..real laughter. I have hope. I sleep well. I look my age now instead of looking 10 years older. I have color in my cheeks and my eyes are clear. I feel so much lighter having rid myself of my constant companions noted above.

This is in total contrast of the feelings of despair I felt when I was drinking.  I love my new sober life!

I don’t crave alcohol and pot anymore….never!  I have thoughts of drinking on rare occasion, but they’re just that ….thoughts….I laugh at them!  I mean, these thoughts don’t have any power over me…..the sober me is in the driver’s seat now.

I still make sobriety and recovery the number one priority in my life…I will not put myself in dangerous situations.  No alcohol in my house, never!  I don’t hang out with people who drink….I don’t listen to music that reminds me of drinking and I don’t participate in activities that remind me of drinking.

I take time every day to express gratitude for being sober…..gratitude  for  the freedom to live my life without guilt, shame and remorse.

I’ll say it again….Everything, and I do mean everything, is better now that I’m sober…..even the bad days!

“The miracle of gratitude is that it shifts your perception to such an extent that it changes the world you see…”     Dr.Robert Holden



  1. daniel barreau on March 2, 2013 at 9:19 am

    Lmfao! Unreal Heather! Your experience and timing of it is almost exactly identical to mine — except mine was visiting some old hippies, shooting pool with them and rejoicing in good good music — in other words having too good of a time where alcohol was easy to get and too much of a comeraderie feeling going on. Since then I have looked for the first time at the power music has in dragging me in to my alcoholism. Now I choose a different path: I listen to music I have never heard before in genres not associated with my drinking life before, and I am loving both the music and the exploration of musical diversity that doesn’t kindle any desire for drinking. In fact now I wouldn’t want to drink to the music as it is so diverse I would miss out hearing the contrasts if drinking as I would listen to thoughts in my head rather than be mindful to the music or ask questions about what I am hearing. Peace n love, danny

  2. Solange on January 25, 2013 at 2:07 am

    Thank you,
    Both of you for your online letters posted above. My partner is an alcoholic and I am a sugar addict. Craig W, you helped me feel like there could be hope for us, my partner especially. Heather, you also gave me hope and helped me see that the time for changing my habit is now and not later. Again Thank you both for making me feel like I’m not alone and caring people like you two are out there.

  3. Heather on January 20, 2013 at 3:18 pm

    Thank you for such an inspiring letter and one with which I really identify. I recently acknowledged that I am an alcoholic and with enormous support of my medical team and a Community Psychiatric Nurse I am doing well. However having been sober for nearly three months I went on a short holiday to family and with too much time at the airport I made the decision to have a drink thinking I would be fine. And I was for the whole week away no problem but on my return I decided I would be okay with just one or two more. No. I drifted on in this pattern over Christmas and New year and on the 2nd of Jan I realized if I did not get a grip there and then I do not know what would have been the result. I had previously over the last year had several very serious emotional breakdowns and on reflection I know I cannot have even one drink ever! I am getting all the amazing support again and with each day I am getting stronger. It is not easy but determined I am not to go down that slippery slope. There is certainly more to life than alcohol. My family are incredibly supportive too. Bless them, they love me as much as I love them. Thank you again!!